The federal government is being ordered to comply with a First Nations child welfare ruling for the third time.
In 2016, the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal ruled the First Nations child welfare system is underfunded and discriminatory. The tribunal has issued three compliance orders to the federal government.
The First Nations Child and Family Care Society of Canada and the Canadian Human Rights commission have joined forces to persuade the Canadian Human Rights tribunal to provide immediate relief with over double the amount of funding already in place.
Sebastien Grammond, Civil Law Professor at the University of Ottawa and the lawyer representing the Caring society in this case explains why immediate reform is required.
“In the US, this is much more developed. The aboriginal communities have their group, their own child codes with respect to child welfare. There’s federal legislation that gives priority to those systems. Thus is not something unheard of. They’re doing it south of the border, why not in Canada.”
In 2016, the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society recommended putting 216 million dollars towards Indigenous child welfare across Canada.
The Liberals offered 99 million dollars spread out over five years in the 2017 federal budget.
MP Michael McLeod says last weeks federal budget is big on promises and small on detail.
“I think it’s important to note that the budget announced general investments and not a lot of specifics. For example, we talked about ten point one billion dollars for transportation, which includes the big roads. We have been waiting to hear on the Mackenzie Valley highway and this is where the application is going to go. It’s going to take some time now to put in a request and get it reviewed. There’s lots of money made available. Now it’s up to us to try to get our hands on it.”
Discussion and public hearings for the 2017 federal budget wrap up today in Ottawa.
— Angela Sterritt (@AngelaSterritt) March 30, 2017